Office of Undergraduate and Outreach Programs
The Office of Undergraduate and Outreach Programs works with academic units in the College of Health and Human Development and others at Penn State and in our student, alumni, academic and professional communities to facilitate collaborative and innovative teaching, learning, advising and co-curricular activities that will develop the next generation of passionate leaders who will improve human well-being across the lifespan.
- Academic Affairs: Curriculum and Course Proposals; Academic Integrity and Grade Mediation; Teaching and Learning Development; Schreyer Honors Programs; Program Assessment and Outcomes; Academic Policies and Procedures
- Student Services: Academic Advising; Student Orientation, Transition and Retention; Financial Aid; Student Affairs, Organizations and Engagement
- Student Recruitment
- World Campus, Conferences, Embedded Programs
- Career Development/Engaged Learning: Career Development and Placement; Internships and Experiential Programs; Study Abroad; Undergraduate Research
Frequently Asked Questions
- What needs to be in my syllabus?
Details on this policy and all Penn State academic policies can be found on the Faculty Senate website. A written (paper or electronic form) syllabus must be distributed to students in each course on or before the first class meeting. Changes to the syllabus shall also be given to the student in written (paper or electronic) form. In addition to course content, expectations, and location of the program, the syllabus must include the following information: Course examination policy; Contact information for all course instructors; Grade breakdown by assessment type and percentage; Required course materials; Course Goals and Objectives; Academic integrity policy for the course; and Information on procedures related to academic adjustments identified by the Office of Student Disability Resources, reporting educational equity concerns through the Report Bias website, and available Counseling & Psychological Services
- What do I do if I think a student has cheated or they are disputing their grade?
Penn State policy expects faculty to discuss violations of academic integrity or grade disputes with a student. In both cases, a conversation with your PIC, department head or Dennis Shea may be very helpful before and after that student meeting. If you conclude a student has violated academic integrity, submit an Academic Integrity form, with documentation and a proposed sanction, through our online portal. All violations, even minor ones, should be reported. Efforts to mediate grade disputes must occur between you, the student, and your PIC or department head. If the dispute cannot be resolved, the student can submit a Grade Adjudication petition to Dennis Shea.
- I think a student is in trouble. What should I do?
Faculty can note students’ academic struggles in Starfish by sending a note to the student and adviser. Faculty are prompted twice each semester to do this, but can also login and note problems at other times. Students’ personal challenges might warrant a discussion with their adviser or a contact with the Office for Student Care and Advocacy (863-2020). In extreme cases, walking a student to Counseling & Psychological Services at University Health Services may be appropriate.
- How can I improve my teaching?
Penn State has numerous resources for teaching and learning development. Instructional designers and other learning specialists are available in our Office of Outreach Programs for consultations. The Schreyer Institute for Teaching Excellence offers a New Instructor Orientation, individual consultations, as well as numerous workshops for faculty. Other resources include Teaching and Learning with Technology, Penn State World Campus for online pedagogy, and IT Learning and Design offers programs on Canvas, Adobe, Kaltura and other teaching tools. Funds for teaching development are available from HHD and many of these groups, too.
- How do I propose a new course or program (e.g., major, minor, certificate) or a change in an existing one?
Penn State uses a web portal for all curricular proposals. Any faculty member can login and initiate a proposal. Before proposing courses or curricular changes, a good discussion with the program Professor-in-Charge, your department curriculum representative, your department head, and other department faculty is expected. Your curriculum representative or Heather Zimmerman can assist you in submitting proposals in the system.
Key Related Resource
Center for Student Advising and Engagement
Office of Outreach Programs
Career Development and Engaged Learning